How Much Does a Makeup Artist Earn UK?

How Much Does a Makeup Artist Earn UK?

If people often complement you on your make-up skills then you may have what it takes to be a make-up artist.

Is being a make-up artist worth your time? More importantly, how much does a make-up artist earn in the UK?

How much does a Makeup artist get paid?

Demand for a makeup artist in the UK spans several industries and sectors. Depending on where you land, you’ll have the opportunity to earn anywhere from £20,000 to £40,000 per year.

On average, a UK make-up artist can have a salary of £20,000 annually. The type of work and experience can make the average salary higher or lower. Also, there’s the matter of being a freelance makeup artist, which pays per gig, or someone who’s been employed, such as a counter worker at a beauty shop.

Typically, freelance artists can make up to £300 daily. New freelancers make around £100 per day while veterans and those who are established can earn more.

Keep in mind that along with the earnings you will also have to take care of upkeep and expenses, including your kit, travel, insurance and others, which can deduct from your overall salary. There’s also a list of requirements you’ll have to meet if you want to become a legitimate freelancer.

How to Become a Makeup Artist

In the makeup artist industry the more experience and skills you have the greater your chance of being successful.

Many freelance make-up artists are self-taught, while others learn from a veteran of the industry. You could be under the tutelage of a senior artist or have attended numerous courses and seminars, both of which can propel you further at the beginning.

You will also need to compile a portfolio of previous work you’ve done. This may include beauty shots, editorial work and commercial work, among others. In the TV and film sector most artists are required to present their portfolio with SFX, or special effects to highlight skillset.

To separate yourself from the crowd you can build a brand just like an artist, musician or photographer would. You must also learn about marketing, sales and tax and all the things you need to run a business if you’re willing to devote more time in being a make-up artist.

Industries that need Makeup Artists

A freelance artist can end up working in the private sector, TV, film, beauty of fashion. It’s not exclusive, though- you can work for a client for several weeks, then get called to TV or film for a month, and so on.

The more work you get the higher the pay. Furthermore, for every year you get a job and accumulate experience you can charge higher fees.

A runway make-up artist can make up to £350 each day. When you become an established name you can get anywhere between ten to twenty shows yearly.

In film and TV, makeup work is much more lucrative as it normally includes a contract, and the length of time can be anywhere from a few weeks to several months.

In fashion and beauty the earnings can vary. However, if you don’t mind teaching you can opt for a role where you train the next generation of artists in institutions and academies.

Salary may vary if you choose a makeup counter job. Here, you’ll be selling and showcasing makeup brands to people and passers-by. You’ll have a proper job and can earn around £20,000 per year plus commission. However, you will need to really learn and understand the products you’ll be selling and have a salesman’s charm. Plus, good customer service is an important skill as well.

Working in a counter is more structured compared to a freelance makeup artist in the UK. You work a set amount of hours per day and get time off. You also get benefits such as sick leaves, paid leaves and bonuses.

Final Thoughts

If you’re good with your hands and can do decent makeup work then all you need is to take a course or two to determine if you have what it takes to be a make-up artist in the UK. From there, you can choose to be a freelancer and build your brand or work a counter and a day job.